Academic journals each select new student editors-in-chief

The University of South Carolina School of Law is proud to announce the newly-elected editors-in-chief of the school’s four academic journals.

Trey Harrison: Editor-in-Chief of the ABA Real Property, Trust & Estate Law Journal

When it comes to adding more work to an already difficult law school schedule, second-year student Trey Harrison says helping build a stronger community makes it all worth it. The newly-elected editor-in-chief got his start with the Property Journal as a first-year student, which helped him build a strong network of friends and refine his writing skills.

The Columbia native attended Presbyterian College, where he graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in both history and political science. His long-term goal is to work as in-house counsel for a corporation, specifically an insurance company, such as South Carolina Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company, where he currently works.

If school, a job, and now a leadership position at the journal weren’t enough, Harrison also works with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program, and is an active member of the Student Bar Association.

Under his tenure, Harrison says he’s looking forward to two major milestones: the move to the new School of Law building, and the journal’s first symposium, scheduled for this November. Ultimately, he says he wants to give back to the journal, what it has given to him.

“We have great members, who are good at what they do, and it is my job to help them do their best. My goal is to continue the great work-product we have and to foster our great community atmosphere,” says Harrison.

The ABA Real Property, Trust & Estate Law Journal is an official publication of the American Bar Association. The Journal is distributed triannually to law libraries and nearly 22,000 members of the ABA’s Real Property, Trust and Estate Law Section. But it is the journal’s collaborative editing process between students and a national editorial board of professionals selected by the RPTE that makes it so unique. Professional editors are responsible for acquiring relevant and scholarly articles. These articles are then forwarded to student editors who format, edit, and verify all citations before going back to the professional editorial board for final approval and publication.

Meagan Allen:
Editor-in-Chief of the South Carolina Journal of International Law and Business

From small town to world-wide—that’s Meagan Allen’s dream. The Aynor, South Carolina, native aspires to practice international trade law. And now, she’s one step closer, after being elected editor-in-chief of the South Carolina Journal of International Law and Business.

The College of Charleston grad says it was the range of topics the journal covers that drew her to it originally. She graduated with a degree in political science and a concentration in politics, philosophy, and law, before coming to UofSC Law. When she accepted her membership to the journal as a first-year student, she didn’t think she’d ever become editor-in-chief.

“I was honestly a little surprised when I received the phone call from our faculty advisors offering me the position. There were five other outstanding candidates for EIC and, thus, the race was very competitive. However, I was both ecstatic and humbled to learn that the faculty advisors, as well as my peers, had enough faith in my vision for our journal to select me,” says Allen.

When Allen finds free time, she likes to spend it working with the School of Law’s Student Animal Legal Defense Fund. Her love for animals is wide-spread, but she has a special place in her heart for her five-year-old toy poodle, Lucy. Allen serves as a peer mentor to a group of first-year students. She is also musically talented, skilled in five instruments including piano, guitar, ukulele, and has even played the upright bass in a bluegrass band.

When it comes to the future of the SCJILB, Allen says it’s important to utilize the talent she has on her current editorial board, as well as the talent of incoming staff editors.

“I want to ensure that our Journal is a beacon of academic excellence and dedication to public service,” says Allen.

The South Carolina Journal of International Law and Business seeks to serve South Carolinians by creating a forum for discussion about how international law and business affects the state. In addition to the semi-annual journal, SCJILB engages professionals and scholars through its biennial symposia.

Catherine Ortmann:
Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Law and Education

Catherine Ortmann feels right at home at USC Law after receiving her bachelor’s degree in history at the university. And coming from a family of educators, she feels just as “at home” at the Journal of Law and Education.

The Sumter native calls her decision to join the journal her “best choice.” When it came to her decision to run for EIC, she looked up to two mentors—outgoing editor-in-chief Michael Trask, and her attorney mentor Katharine Swinson, who was also in JLED. The journal’s former members set the bar high, but Ortmann says she knows her members will produce great work and help keep the journal moving in a positive direction.

When it comes to leadership style, Ortmann calls herself a “positive deviant,” saying she’ll do whatever it takes to make a difference and promote improvement in the projects and people around her.

Ortmann looks to be a force of change in all aspects of her life, holding many leadership positions outside of the classroom. She is the historian for Phi Delta Phi, and a member of the American Constitutional Society, as well as Women in Law student organizations. She works as a law clerk for the South Carolina Senate Judiciary Committee during the school year and serves as a mentor for the Beta Epsilon Chapter of Alpha Delta Pi at the university. She continues to be involved in her church, Midtown Fellowship, and during the summers is a senior counselor at Palmetto Girls State.

Looking ahead, Ortmann says she’s exploring opportunities in education and employment law, but for now she’s focused on advancing the Journal, as well as building relationships with her members.

“As soon as I won, one of the other candidates who had run for EIC instantly contacted me and told me how proud she was of me. I think that really speaks to the quality of our members and the bond that we have all formed because of our membership,” says Ortmann.

The Journal of Law and Education is a quarterly publication featuring articles on all aspects of constitutional and civil law related to American education. JLE is published jointly in conjunction with the University of Louisville’s Brandeis School of Law. After more than forty years in print and online, JLE continues to serve as an important resource for judges, lawyers, teachers, school administrators, and education practitioners. Subscriptions to JLE are distributed throughout the United States and reach more than 14 foreign countries.

Chelsea Evans:
Editor-in-Chief of the South Carolina Law Review

Chelsea Evans made history as the first African-American editor-in-chief of the South Carolina Law Review, and now that she’s won, she’s ready to get to work.

The North Myrtle Beach native graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in public health from the university. But it was a position performing policy research for Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin, while still in undergraduate, that helped her see that attending law school would fulfill her dream of finding a career that would also suit her desire to serve.

Her new role is one that’s garnered a lot of attention, something she’s not always been comfortable with, but she’s eager to use the platform to inspires others.

“I’m incredibly humbled to be elected editor-in-chief, and I hope that my election encourages more women and people of color to pursue law degrees, journal membership and the position of editor-in-chief,” says Evans.

In addition to the demands of the South Carolina Law Review, and her studies, she works as a research assistant and a member of the Pro Bono Board. She participates in other student organizations, including the Black Law Students Association, serves as a mentor to middle-school students in the Constitutional Scholars Pipeline Program, and is a judicial extern for U.S. District Court Judge J. Michelle Childs.

After law school, Evans says she is interested in corporate law, and will continue to invest herself in service work and the community wherever she lives. For now, when she gets a quiet moment, it’s spent with her friends and family, especially her younger sister Taylor, an undergraduate student at the university.

The South Carolina Law Review is the principal legal publication in South Carolina. It is also the oldest legal publication in the state, founded in 1948. The Law Review traces its roots to 1831, during the brief existence of the Carolina Bar Journal, which was published in Columbia, South Carolina prior to the Civil War. Today, the Law Review is the flagship legal publication at the University of South Carolina and is one of the most frequently cited legal journals in the country.